Modern Marriage

DesertRose

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Why do people have unrealistic expectations about marriage in these times
.....No one can fulfill all those lofty requirements:
interesting read:

Relational Thinking

Why is Modern Love So Damn Hard?
Esther Perel
Last week, I posed a question on Facebook, “Why is Modern Love So Hard?” You responded with amazing reflections, questions, and stories. For today’s article I want to focus on one set of these responses.

I want to speak to those of you who view commitment as a loss of self.

The idea that we lose ourselves in the presence of our partner is deeply ingrained in the modern perception of love, particularly in the United States. As almost all of our communal institutions give way to a heightened sense of individualism, we look more frequently to our partner to provide the emotional and physical resources that a village or community used to provide.

Is it any wonder that, tied up in relying on a partner for compassion, reassurance, sexual excitement, financial partnership, etc. that we end up looking to them for identity or, even worse, for self-worth?

Combine that with the commodification of love, the increasingly omnipresent “is there somebody better?”, and we have a recipe for decreasing the perceived “cost” of love. All the while increasing our expectations on our partnerships, and even adding more to the list, without really understanding what we’re asking.

This year, I’ve made it a point to take notes at any weddings I attend about the marital vow. I think this single speech is so reflective of the way our expanding expectations have gotten out of control. Here I offer you a poignant, if exaggerated, example of how these typically go:



“I promise that I will always be there for you, honest with you, kind, patient and forgiving. For you are my lover and my teacher and I honor the divinity in you,” says the groom, with an uncharacteristic quiver in his voice.

“I promise to be your greatest fan and your toughest adversary, your partner in crime, and your consolation in disappointment,” responds his bride, in almost perfect cadence. With unquestionable sincerity, he continues, “I promise to tell you everything, to have no secrets except those we share.”

“I promise faithfulness, respect, and self-improvement,” she declares. To which, he one-ups her by replying, “I will not only celebrate your triumphs, I will love you all the more for your failures.” Smiling through her tears, she says, “I promise never to wear heels so you won’t feel short. And to comfort you when your football team loses and drink with you when they win.”

Taking a small box of her favorite chocolates from his best man, he says, “I promise to always bring these at that time of the month, and never to ask you if it is that time of the month.” Having promised each other the heavens and the earth, they kiss to rapturous applause.


The All or Nothing Marriage by Eli Finkel. Eli, a psychological scientist, goes into some depth about the research behind modern marriage, focusing in particular on the increasing set of expectations behind marriage and the ideology behind the institution.

  • Loving Bravely by Alexandra Solomon. Alexandra is the founder of Marriage 101, a course at Northwestern University that teaches undergraduates how to prepare for the types of relationships they want to have. Her book is a wonderfully written insight into the process of developing “relational self-awareness”, the prerequisite to being in a healthy relationship.
 

DesertRose

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The more unrealistic the expectations, the less chance the marriage has of surviving. Individuals are easier to control than family units. So governments/ Hollywood / media, whatever, try to create more individuals. Imo.
This then would be part of the strategy against families....
tbh I have seen many families breakdown due to these expectations and ego.:(
 
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Karlysymon

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On Second Thought, Don't Get Married
...But the skill of choosing a marriage partner has often been treated as relatively unimportant in our society and a whole lot less complex than it actually is. And herein lies the secret of why marriage has often turned out so disappointingly for so many. It’s frighteningly easy to choose the wrong person...
But after decades of working with a few thousand well-intended and hardworking married people, I’ve become convinced that 75 percent of what culminates in a
disappointing marriage — or a great marriage — has far less to do with hard work and far more to do with partner selection
based on “broad-based
compatibility.” It became clear to me that signs which were predictive of the huge
differences between eventually disappointing and ultimately great marriages were obvious during the premarital phase of relationships."


@DesertRose
Your role models :D :D

World’s oldest married couple aged 110 and 103 celebrate their 90th wedding anniversary



When i first read this story, i had to ask myself if these people were really earthlings and not visitors from another planet :D . 90 years!!! That's crazy
 

DesertRose

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@DesertRose
Your role models :D :D
How old were they when they married??
:D:eek::D
Have been checking out more of Ester Perel's stuff today and she has an interesting take on keeping desire and security of love....
(I do not agree with everything btw).
She discusses the fact that after the knot is tied a few people start taking each other for granted....
The need for making an effort and keeping your partner guessing, interested and being appreciative of them as well..
The need for displaying your best self not just be at work but also at home.
How people pay money to stop stagnation at work but not at home.
How they are charming and witty with their clients because they are threatened by the fact that they may go to the competition but not at home

Second, one person cannot fulfill the expectations for a person that used to be filled by a whole village or community. Also allowing spouses room for their own interests etc.

has far less to do with hard work and far more to do with partner selection
based on “broad-based compatibility.”
That makes sense.:)

Esther Perel discusses how most marriages that are successful allow couples to redefine the relationship over the course of time.

 
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JoChris

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Mar 15, 2017
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Why do people have unrealistic expectations about marriage in these times
.....No one can fulfill all those lofty requirements:
interesting read:

Relational Thinking
Why is Modern Love So Damn Hard?

Esther Perel
Last week, I posed a question on Facebook, “Why is Modern Love So Hard?” You responded with amazing reflections, questions, and stories. For today’s article I want to focus on one set of these responses.

I want to speak to those of you who view commitment as a loss of self.

The idea that we lose ourselves in the presence of our partner is deeply ingrained in the modern perception of love, particularly in the United States. As almost all of our communal institutions give way to a heightened sense of individualism, we look more frequently to our partner to provide the emotional and physical resources that a village or community used to provide.

Is it any wonder that, tied up in relying on a partner for compassion, reassurance, sexual excitement, financial partnership, etc. that we end up looking to them for identity or, even worse, for self-worth?

Combine that with the commodification of love, the increasingly omnipresent “is there somebody better?”, and we have a recipe for decreasing the perceived “cost” of love. All the while increasing our expectations on our partnerships, and even adding more to the list, without really understanding what we’re asking.

This year, I’ve made it a point to take notes at any weddings I attend about the marital vow. I think this single speech is so reflective of the way our expanding expectations have gotten out of control. Here I offer you a poignant, if exaggerated, example of how these typically go:



“I promise that I will always be there for you, honest with you, kind, patient and forgiving. For you are my lover and my teacher and I honor the divinity in you,” says the groom, with an uncharacteristic quiver in his voice.

“I promise to be your greatest fan and your toughest adversary, your partner in crime, and your consolation in disappointment,” responds his bride, in almost perfect cadence. With unquestionable sincerity, he continues, “I promise to tell you everything, to have no secrets except those we share.”

“I promise faithfulness, respect, and self-improvement,” she declares. To which, he one-ups her by replying, “I will not only celebrate your triumphs, I will love you all the more for your failures.” Smiling through her tears, she says, “I promise never to wear heels so you won’t feel short. And to comfort you when your football team loses and drink with you when they win.”

Taking a small box of her favorite chocolates from his best man, he says, “I promise to always bring these at that time of the month, and never to ask you if it is that time of the month.” Having promised each other the heavens and the earth, they kiss to rapturous applause.


The All or Nothing Marriage by Eli Finkel. Eli, a psychological scientist, goes into some depth about the research behind modern marriage, focusing in particular on the increasing set of expectations behind marriage and the ideology behind the institution.

  • Loving Bravely by Alexandra Solomon. Alexandra is the founder of Marriage 101, a course at Northwestern University that teaches undergraduates how to prepare for the types of relationships they want to have. Her book is a wonderfully written insight into the process of developing “relational self-awareness”, the prerequisite to being in a healthy relationship.
The expectation that a husband and wife will fulfill all personal needs and never fail each other is as unrealistic as expecting a baby to walk without ever falling over.

I have seen those kind of relationships only in very happily married couples who have been with each other for decades. They have grown together, know each intimately through going through good times AND bad, and support each other as a result. They accept each others' weaknesses and don't try and change them.

No wonder so many marriages fail if newish couples (I know most live together for several years these days) expect a ring on the finger will mean the relationship becomes perfect. It actually sounds very childish to me.
 

DesertRose

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expecting a baby to walk without ever falling over.
Really good analogy!

Why is it hard for people to believe that people have to learn how to be together?

No wonder so many marriages fail if newish couples (I know most live together for several years these days) expect a ring on the finger will mean the relationship becomes perfect. It actually sounds very childish to me.
Agreed again those stories and movies about 'happily ever after' set the couples up for failure. When the inevitable problems begin one of them might bail. :(
 

Trenton

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Marriage is really hard.

But it's something you must put work into.

I'm not married but I've considered marrying my partner many times before. Even unmarried we have lived together 24/7 for almost 9 years now.

I was talking with his orthodontist a couple days ago, a really nice Christian woman, married 14 years, 3 children, "great life". Her mother suggested they divorce while she went through a rough patch recently... Ridiculous.

Luckily she decided "Uh, no I will work things out with my husband. Therapy, talking, opening up. Etc." They moved past the issues, and still work together, and still married.

Literally everyone has issues in marriage.

I think people in modern society are fed fairy tale lies about love and romance.

I think modern people like instant gratification.

I think modern families are ridiculed for being "old fashioned"

People give up super easy.

'i had plans before I got married'

'we don't have enough sex'

Stupid shit.

Grow up people. Marriage isn't selfish.

I've been through some serious issues in my relationship. But I'm happy to keep fighting against my demons, sharing and growing with another human being.

No matter how hard and impossible it feels sometimes.

I mean, unless your husband or wife is beating you, ridiculing you, negleting you, cheating on you...

Work it out..

Why did you marry if it wasn't a true promise of commitment?
 

DesertRose

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More interesting thoughts on the need for security, caretaking which fuels love and the need for adventure, space, curiosity which fuels desire in a relationship.

Excerpt:
“Our definition of intimacy is not that of our grandparents, who lived together, worked the land, had a partnership and shared the vicissitudes of everyday life,” says Perel, who is not one for fluffy platitudes. (She speaks seven languages, and treats clients in all of them.)

“Intimacy as we define it today is about transparency, sharing everything and being known, and transcending our existential aloneness by the shared connection with one other. We still want everything we wanted from traditional marriage – a family, companionship, social status, economic support – but we also want that person to give us mystery and transcendence.”
In the past we derived our sense of security and of self not just from marriage, but from our bonds with the wider community, she says. Consequently, marital intimacy has become burdened with expectations, some of them highly contradictory. In short, love and security need closeness; passion and desire need space.

“This wholesale sharing and constant transparency deprives us of a certain mystery, of an ability to remain curious about one another,” says Perel. “It is a real experiment to try to bring together two fundamental human needs – our need for security, and our need for adventure – in one relationship, to ask the same person to make us feel safe and stable, and make us feel playful, mischievous and adventurous.”

So, are the two fundamentally incompatible? “Not incompatible, no. It is a tension, a finely calibrated balance. It is a paradox to be managed, not a problem to be solved.”


Furthermore, we have come to see sex as the barometer of the health of a relationship – for the first time in history it has become not a function for procreation, but a defining factor in marital happiness. “And happiness has, in turn, become the defining feature for staying in a marriage or not. Before, happiness was in the afterlife,” she says.

Perel’s European upbringing gives her a certain perspective on her subject matter. She observes, as probably only an outsider can, that cherished American values, such as egalitarianism, directness, pragmatism and intolerance of ambiguity, are of benefit in the boardroom, but not in the bedroom. “They make for good business, but I don’t know that they are the best skills in the erotic realm,” she asserts.

I can hardly bear to ask, but what about us Brits? “You are similar to the Americans. You are less upfront, less direct, much more understated, yes… But you are not Latin,” she concludes. “The ambiguity, the playfulness, the flirt, the seduction, that dance that the Latins are so masterful at is not part of the Anglo-Saxon culture.”
 
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Karlysymon

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Really good analogy!

Why is it hard for people to believe that people have to learn how to be together?
And this is something i often wonder at... if at the end of the day, you have to learn to live with someone, is there really any difference between (as the Indians say) a love-marriage and an arranged-marriage? And yet, no one pretty much, wants an arranged marriage.
Nicole Kidman said something similar along that line

"...that she knew she wanted to marry Urban after dating him for only one month. "I'm spontaneous," she said. "I jump in. I kind of like getting married and then getting to know each other. I know that it sounds incredibly strange, but to me, it's a more
natural process." In fact, they got married so quickly, Kidman admitted in 2015 that they only really got to know each other after they said "I do." "We got married very quickly and we got to know each other when we were married"
 

DesertRose

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And this is something i often wonder at... if at the end of the day, you have to learn to live with someone, is there really any difference between (as the Indians say) a love-marriage and an arranged-marriage?
Hmmm good point!
Mind you the difference would be in the feelings and expectations.....
one has little feelings perhaps the person is a bit scared and not many expectations and the other has lots of feelings and high expectations.
 

Vytas

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I find those vows cute...Also i think unreal expectations would be dead last when it comes to divorce reasons. Idealism, perfectionism, it will go away with years naturally...Not that i disagree with whats said in OP completely...
 

DesertRose

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Does anyone have that vile tv show married at first sight? What do you think of it?
I found it fascinating that someone would do that voluntarily.....I have seen a few episodes.
A redeeming quality is that the partnership is kind of systematic.....with the experts and such.
Would I do that......No.
Would I want to know who they would pick? Yes!
Moreover, I would like to have the pages for their reasoning.;)
 
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DesertRose

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I find those vows cute...Also i think unreal expectations would be dead last when it comes to divorce reasons. Idealism, perfectionism, it will go away with years naturally...Not that i disagree with whats said in OP completely...
I see what you mean and agree it is a bit simplistic.....
However, you would be surprised at how many people fight because they expected something from their partner or over unrealized (unvoiced) expectations. Sometimes people do not accept people for who they are but what they perceive them to be or how they want them to be.
Kind of hard to articulate, excuses Vytas.:)
 
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